Moving into a new home is inherently different from moving into an established one; which is why we’ve compiled an essential new house move-in checklist to help you on your way.
If you’re wondering how moving into a new home differs from moving into an established one, you’re not alone. My partner and I were blissfully unaware of all the additional planning and organising that came along with purchasing a new construction home.
On top of all the usual sorting and packing that comes with moving, you should expect to spend a lot of time on the phone with your local council, and filling out paperwork!
At times, it can get a little overwhelming. But, hopefully, with the help of this list, you can better prepare yourself for what’s to come. Don’t make the same mistakes that we did!
Table of Contents
6 MONTHS PRIOR TO HANDOVER
· Start Ordering New Furniture And Appliances.
As ridiculous as this might sound, it’s best to get in early when ordering new furniture and appliances as soon as possible. Some pieces may take as long as 5-6 months to order in! So, unless you want to be eating dinner off the floor, or settling for furniture that’s not quite right, you’d best start furniture shopping now!
· Check Your Internet Coverage
Unless you’re moving into a new development, it’s likely that you’ll need to organise the installation and connection of a new internet line. While some builders are kind enough to do this for you, most won’t… so it’s important you add it to your to-do list.
My partner and I didn’t chase this up prior to moving in. As a result we had to spend 3 months without internet! In order to avoid this, you should be registering your build with the NBN about 6 months before your move-in date!
If you need a verge installed at your new address, you’ll need to organise this with your local council as soon as possible. Oftentimes you can do this online, but it can also be done over the phone/in person.
3 MONTHS PRIOR TO HANDOVER
· Organise External Trades
Are you thinking about getting your landscaping, flooring or air conditioning done externally? Now’s the time to start getting in contact with trades! Generally, these kinds of installers will need a few months’ notice to squeeze you in, so it’s best to get quotes while your build is still ongoing. After all, you don’t want to be stuck living in a hot, muggy house!
· Meet the Neighbors
Speaking of external trades, if you’re erecting a boundary fence, now’s the time to start tracking down your neighbors to talk about it! If your neighbors are already moved-in, leaving your name & number in their letterbox will probably suffice. However, if you’re having trouble getting in ouch (or living next to an empty block), your local council should be able to provide you with their contact details.
1 MONTH PRIOR TO HANDOVER
· Book Removalists.
Unless you’ve got a hoard of friends to help you move, you might want to think about hiring a removalist. While some removalists can be organized on short notice, you’ll generally pay a premium for booking last minute! You’re far better off shopping around for the best offer now & saving yourself a few hundred dollars down the track.
· Get household insurance
While some insurance companies/banks need the house to be completed before providing cover, others will allow you to start the claim period a week or two early. If you can, I recommend organizing insurance roughly 3 weeks before moving into your new home. This way, you’ll avoid a lapse in coverage during handover.
Why not organize it closer to move-in? Because accidental fire and flood mightn’t be covered during the first few weeks of cover. It’s a bummer- we know!
1 WEEK PRIOR TO HANDOVER
· Order Your Council Bins.
Depending on where you’re building, council bins can be ordered either online or by calling your local council chambers! It’s best to do this one or two days before you get the keys (so they’re ready for all moving boxes!).
· Set Up A Mail Redirection
A few days before moving, you should head down to your local post office and set up a mail redirection. This will ensure that any bills/important documents will find their way to your new home in the event you forget to change your home address. After all, while you might think you’ve changed your address everywhere it needs to be changed, you’ll inevitably miss one!
· Organise a babysitter/petsitter
Moving day is stressful enough without adding young children or pets into the mix! If you can manage/afford it, it’s best to organise a babysitter/pet sitter about a week ahead of time. Trust us, things will go much smoother without little ones running around!
· Connect Your Utilities
Most new home builders will do this for you, but it’s always best to double-check! After all, you’re going to want working water, electricity and gas on move-in day.
· Buy A Letterbox
Unless you plan on making a last-minute trip to bunnings on move-in day, you should have a letterbox and/or street numbers on hand! This way, delivery drivers/removalists/etc won’t have any issues locating your new house. Without it, you can expect a few phone calls on moving day!
· Book In Your Deliveries
If you’re lucky enough to have purchased new furniture or appliances for your home, now’s the time to be booking in delivery dates and times. Generally, furniture stores will need at least a week’s notice to organise drivers and veichles – so it’s best to get in touch as soon as you have a handover date.
· Measure & Order Curtains
Unless you’re lucky enough to get access to your build during construction, it’s best to order your curtains and window fittings after handover. This is because the TRUE size of your windows will often vary (by a few mm) from the original plan. Pre-book a measure & quote with your local installer- or plan a trip to spotlight on move-in day.
The sooner you can book in a measure & quote the better- trust me, you’ll get tired of using newspaper as window coverings pretty quickly.
· Update ALL Your Addresses
Some of the places you’ll need to update your address might include:
- Electoral Roll;
- Driver Licence / Ezireg;
- Phone & Internet companies;
- Subscription services (Hellofresh, magazines, etc.);
- Insurance companies
What did you think of our new house move-in checklist? Is there anything we missed?